Why I didn’t celebrate five years in business

Last year in November marked five years in business and you know what? I refused to celebrate, hell I didn't even acknowledge it.

Now five years is a long time in business - for anything in these days we live in.

So why didn't I celebrate? Why wasn't I having a party? Throwing confetti in the air and yelling wahoo?

Because I felt, no I honestly believed, I hadn't been successful so there was absolutely no way I was going to celebrate. I considered myself a failure.

At the start of my business

The goals I had set, those dreams I had pictured hadn't happened. And even smaller steps/achievements didn't seem good enough and had been completely buried under the weight of failure.

Up until I started my business I have to admit things were easy. My mum had always told me I could do anything I wanted. So I made up my mind on what I wanted and and then worked out the steps I needed to do to get there. And it worked EVERY SINGLE TIME!

So I had not reason or expectation to think it would be any different in business. Oh my lord was I in for a MASSIVE shock!

I mean everyone would just know how fabulous and amazing I was right? I'd be a success in six months, maybe a year at a push....

I think that's why it's still hard to say I've been in business for five years.

I went in with such unrealistic expectations when plans or investments didn't achieve what I thought the self doubt started to GROW and GROW.

Suddenly I was second and third guessing myself - sometimes it got so bad I was so paralysed I would scroll FB newsfeed and check out women like me and wonder what they had that I didn't.

What did they know that I didn't?
What was I missing?
Did I need to buy a new program or invest in a high priced coach?
Did I need to change everything about me to be successful?
So I would stay in the same spot - not putting myself out there and not creating.

Until I realised there was no money coming in because I hadn't been doing anything except for comparing myself to others and feeling even more miserable.

So what was the change? The birth of my third daughter in early 2016. I had pushed and tried to hustle (I hate that word but it's the right word for the way I was feeling) for six months with the big plan to put away enough money to support our family and so hubby could be home with us for a few months at least.

Our third daughter xoxo

Being in that negative space didn't do anything for me or the business - in fact in that time span I worked hard and pushed more than ever and you know how many clients/dollars I received - NONE! Absolutely none.

By the time the baby arrived I was exhausted and heartbroken. I decided I needed to let go and enjoy the baby for the time being.

I gave myself permission to simply be and not constantly scramble to work. And seriously we needed me to get back to making the business work but I had nothing to give and had to take some time to heal. The baby was amazing and so was having hubby move to a local job.

The thought of giving up the business entirely was simply unacceptable - I did border on applying for uni (again) and interviewed for a job but my HEART kept screaming "no don't you do it Gemma, somehow we know this will work xoxo"

So I let everything sit and a lot of lessons I had picked up (but not been ready to learn) started to fall into place.

Slowly I am starting to emerge and show up as me... to know I wouldn't be perfect, to accept I wasn't going to be popular with everyone. Bloody scary right? 

This is me

It's all those sayings you hear people trot out but until you feel them deep within they're just WORDS.

I decided to LET GO. I can't control everything, in fact I could only control what I did and how I acted. I don't know any more what will happen.

The woo woo side of me is getting released a bit by bit.

While I used to be a rule follower - now I know I HAVE to do what feels right for me. And those rules, my rules, are the only ones that matter.

I always say to people how important it is we stay with a consistent message - one that really aligns with who we are. I'm finally learning it for myself.

And it feels so much EASIER.

Are you ready to enter a business award?

Did you know when I talk about business awards I can normally bet on what people are going to say next?



I’m not ready.

Why can I guess that? Because so many of us don’t feel ready, it’s scary putting ourselves out there and letting other people openly judge us.

What if they don’t like us?
What if we don’t measure up?
What if we don’t win?
What if we do win?

You see it brings up all those feelings of inadequacy which we have to fight daily in business (well I do anyway). Are we ever ready? Do we ever feel good enough?

When we are working in or on our own business we start to become blinded to the amazing things we do.


We may think it’s normal or what we are doing is nothing special. The truth is anyone who is in business and keeps showing up and trying is already doing something pretty amazing - YOU OWN A BUSINESS. It’s not always easy but isn’t it worth it to do the thing you LOVE to do?

If the answer is yes, go for it.

So before you second guess whether you are ready.. Ask yourself do you love what you do, do you do at least one thing different to other businesses and are you finally brave enough to step forward? No business is perfect. Even those who win awards are still not perfect but they are willing (and do) to take a close look at their business and see what they are doing well and what needs to be worked on.


Do you need help with your application? 

How to use Facebook Live (A beginners guide)

Facebook Live is a great way to start putting yourself out there and getting visible. 

One of the reasons I love video (most of the time) is because you know if you like someone as soon as you see a video. Kind of like meeting someone in real life, you hear them and see their mannerisms and almost automatically you get a feeling - good or bad or meh. 

But either way it's a natural selection process. So with the introduction of Facebook Live it's a great way to start showing off you and your business - in each little imperfect action. 

One of the main reasons I recommend Facebook Live is because it's easy to use, free and a great way to learn and connect with more people. 

I'm going to run through the basic steps for you to use Facebook Live and offer a few tips.. 

First of all, the easiest and quickest way for you to do a Facebook Live is from your phone.  You will need a phone and the Facebook app downloaded.

Make sure your app has all the recent updates to get you up to speed. 

My instructions are from a iPhone perspective but it should be similar for android as well. ​

Open your Facebook business page or type the name in the Search bar to find it. 

Once it's open, it should look something like this. 

You can see the publish button here (under the big Send Message), click it and it will open the following screen. 

On this screen you need to press the Live Video button and start entering information 

In the area where it mentions "Describe your live video" write what you are going to be talking about, try and keep it simple and what may grab people's attention. 

If you can't see yourself on the screen, use the two arrow in the top right hand corner to flip the camera towards you. 

(Note, you can see here my screen saying your connection isn't strong enough. Unfortunately this does happen. You can either change locations or wait for the signal to come back) 

Look in the top right hand corner for the magic wand and tap it. 

Once you have selected the magic wand you will have a number of choices on the bottom row of your screen. 

I'll go through each of the options, working from left to right. 

1. Masks - are silly but can be fun, especially if it suits you and your business (you need to download the masks you want to use, so worth doing and testing before going live) 

2. Filters - just give you a different aspect. It can also give you similar lighting wherever you do your lives from. Again test before use. 

3. Text - you have limited colours and at this stage need to write with your fingers so use it sparingly. 

4. The photo to the left is showing your options here - the flips can be used for various things but the most important is, if you are doing a FB live and you have writing behind you or are teaching on the whiteboard normally everything would show up as back to front. By using this vertical flip you can put them back the way you want them viewed. 

The rubbish bin will let you remove each of these items as you click on that option at the bottom. 

I say test before you go Live so you are happy with everything. 

Now press the cross on the top right hand corner to return to the screen ready to go live.

You can also check in at a place or business or share a feeling... ie feeling nervous because I'm just about to go live on my Facebook page. 

Once you are comfy press Go Live

You will have a short countdown until you are live. And now DO YOUR THING! 

Press Finish at the end. 

My Tips
1. Get some good light behind the camera, the sun is the best 
2. Look at camera and set it up at the right level. Try not to look at yourself on the screen, I've made this mistake more than once. You want your viewers to feel like you are connecting with them...
3. Don't overthink it. Do one and then keep practising. 
4. If you get stuck for topics - think about the questions you always get asked. 
5. Have fun and keep showing up 

The Silver Bullet or Magic Pill

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-diamond-like-sign-made-gems-image35762654I have spent four years feeling frustrated in my business – for a number of reasons really but the main one which I think most of you can understand is that illusion of the friggen silver bullet or magic pill. (I’m not much of a swearer normally but it may help convey how frustrated I am/was).

You know the one, once you find it everything will fall into place. So you keep on buying courses, joining Facebook groups. doing anything and everything you see on social media with the hope that finally you will feel like a success and still you get nowhere.

Maybe I’m offering the wrong service, maybe I’ve priced it too high – hang on a moment you know what if I give it away to a few people they will love me so much they will tell everyone and I will be overrun with customers.

You know what it never worked… if anything the people who got my help for free or for little cost barely left me with a nice testimonial and I don’t think ever referred anyone to me.

I kept trying to over deliver and wow people that I was completely not being generous with myself or treating myself with integrity.

In life so far I had found there were simple rules that if you followed you would succeed.

In school, do the work, be polite to your teacher and classmates and a good grade was pretty much guaranteed.

In work, follow the job description, be bright and bubbly without thinking too much, and go out of your way to help and you would make your boss happy.

All of a sudden you are in business where people are buying you – but what do they want? How can you make them happy? What can you write on a sales page to make them hit the buy now button?

It just wasn’t as simple. My first lesson into this different world of business has still left me scarred and wary – an important lesson but one that still makes me feel angry and a bit stupid. And I hate feeling stupid, I’m meant to be the one who KNOWS it all god damn it.

Being green and super keen to make a huge impact on the world I agreed to a strategy session with an online coach. She was so matter of fact, even though it really bugged me she was eating an apple or something during our call (small side note – people eating nosily is one of my huge annoyances) I listened with bated breath as I waited for her to explain to me how I can could create a six figure business or was it just a course that made me lots of money.

Either way I was hanging on her every word – I hadn’t checked her experience or that she actually knew what she was talking about. Her idea for me – was simple and seemed easy enough. We got to the end and I was waiting to hear the price (later I would learn to be prepared at the end of these strategy/sales calls for a big number which would make you lose your breath for a second).

As she said the amount my heart sank and my stomach clenched – there was no way I could pay that kind of money. But of course then came the buy today at this price or the price goes up.

I discussed it with my hubby and he put his faith in me and the coach and what she was offering. We decided the investment would be worth it to be able to make money for a deposit for our house. Back then that was my dream to help people and save up a deposit for our house..

It hadn’t entered our mind that we may not make our money back. So I signed up and whilst I learnt a lot – it wasn’t worth anything near the investment I had made. Plus as soon as I started to struggle selling places into my course – the coach no longer wanted to know me. Even when I spent more money on working in person I still didn’t get where I needed to go.
Later I realised her actual only experience in creating online courses was that she had created her own course and for a few others who already had huge established lists – the rest of us were just good numbers she could brag about and still does to this day – I made 5 figures in one week.

This is the trouble with courses or programs that offer a one size fits all approach – I know and you know – it’s great for the people it works for, but the rest of us gets left behind or forgotten. People can claim to be an expert and their only experience is doing it once for themselves… and then they create a course. And if the packaging is nice enough, they’re popular enough or their bright coloured hair stands out in a FB Newsfeed all of a sudden they are the go to person. They may eventually become what they claim to be but often it’s after, not before.

It was time for me to say STOP and so should you.

Because you realise you already know more than those who are trying to teach you, the same cliquey groups still exist on Facebook and it doesn’t matter if you have a cure for cancer – fundamentally there is something going on in with you, in you – it’s all about YOU! That’s where there is a disconnect of some sort..

So after four years of frustration and disappointment I decided to try something different – instead of business development I went for self development.

Why wasn’t I getting anywhere?
Why were the people I was trying to help going to others who were much more expensive or who had hardly any experience?
Was it simply I didn’t know my people actually were meant to be?
I had I followed so much different advice over the years that I had ended up with a confused audience and no one knowing what I stood for?

I’m guessing you can tell this is the beginning of my self reflection – I don’t have all the answers and how it will impact my business I’m yet to discover.
So far I can tell you that it is completely scary, nerve wracking and also making me giddy with excitement for what I may discover about me and YOU the person I was meant to help.

How To Link Your Profile to Your Facebook Business Page

Do you spend much time in Facebook groups? Over the past three months I can say I’ve spent quite a bit of time in different groups –  reading, engaging, interacting and so on. BUT being the curious person I am there is one thing which I’m always a bit surprised about and it’s how many people don’t have their personal profile linked to their business page.

linkprofile
One of the best parts about Facebook groups is that you have to use your personal profile to join in so if I see someone write something I like my habit is to hover my mouse over their profile to see what their business is and if it interests me, often I will head over and have a look and in best case scenario like their page and possibly sign up for their opt in.

So many people don’t have it linked. Think about the main reasons we are normally in groups – to interact and network and hopefully grown our business. How are we going to grow our business if people can’t find our business page easily?

So let’s make it easy for them. By the way if you are worried about privacy it is possible to have this section of your profile public whilst the rest remains secure. Follow the steps below.
1. Click on your profile
2. Click on the little pencil in the top right hand corner next to the employment section

linkprofile1

3. Click on add workplace

4. A drop down list will appear but start typing your business page – it must appear in the drop down list for this to work. Choose it.

 

linkprofile2

5. Then choose your position – I’ve seen lots of different variations here. You can use your actual title – CEO or Manager or “Click here to view my business page”

Don’t worry if your title doesn’t appear in the drop down list for this one, it’s not as important.

More recently I’ve changed mine to give an overview of what I do. So I wrote in this section – FB Ads Specialist and Marketing Mentor.

6. The most important thing to note here is you must make this section public so anyone who is hovering over your profile photo can view your job. It’s our whole reason for doing this.
Make sure you press save.linkprofile3

 

 

7. If you want to add previous employers and experience you can do that now as well.
8. If you’ve already linked your profile to your business page but want to make some changes on your title and/or change it to public – you can simply click on the right hand side to edit or delete

linkprofile4

After you’ve saved it it may ask you who else has worked at your business – most of the time this won’t be applicable so you can just ignore this message.

Great now your personal profile should be all linked up to your Facebook business page and people will be able to interact with you more easily.

Five Mistakes You’re Making with Facebook Advertising

If you are just starting out using Facebook Advertising chances are that you have or will make one of these mistakes. Everyday I can see examples in my newsfeed or hear people ask why their Facebook Ads aren’t working.

Of course this post doesn’t cover all the issues but hopefully it will help a few people figure out where they may be having trouble.

So let’s lay out each mistake, why it’s a problem and how we can fix it.

1.You don’t use Power Editor or Adverts Manager

PROBLEM: If you’re asking yourself what the hell is the Power Editor you are definitely not using it and aren’t taking advantage of all that it can do.

Let’s cover briefly the different types of ads. You can boost an ad which happens right from your post on your page (this works well for some types of businesses and posts but you don’t want to do it all the time).

You may be using the Adverts Manager – this is the basic level for advertising. You can do a lot in Adverts Manager but the powerhouse is Power Editor.

I love the Power Editor because:

* You don’t have text limits. I still recommend you still to a couple of paragraphs but nowhere near

* You can create unpublished posts (also known as dark posts) – this means they don’t show up on your business page and you can create a number of different ads to see which ones work the best.

* New features tend to appear first in Power Editor so you can see them first

powereditor

A quick look at Power Editor

You will need to use Google Chrome to access Power Editor but from someone who spends a long time working on ads it’s definitely worth it.

SOLUTION: Understand the different ways to advertise and if you want to utilise the full power of FB advertising, learn and play within Power Editor.

2. You don’t give a clear call to action
PROBLEM: The biggest mistake business owners make is trying to fit everything into one ad. If you give the readers too many options, they won’t remember any or take any action this means your advertising dollars down the drain.
SOLUTION:Understand what you want people to do. Is it:
Sign up to a newsletter
Like your Facebook page
Share your event
Visit your website
Buy your product/service ?

Then make it clear in the ad. For example sign up now to get my free checklist or like my page so I can tell you everything you need to know about Facebook advertising or click here to buy this pair of socks today for only $17.

facebookadexample9

A good example of a clear call to action

3. You don’t research and test your audience
PROBLEM: You will be will wasting time and money with a hit and miss approach.

I go a bit against the norm in my advice for picking audiences. Whilst many FB gurus will tell you to aim for over 500,000 I love testing smaller groups and quite often have best luck under 100,000.

Everything in Facebook Advertising comes back to testing.

audience1

This ad was shown to Australians who were women aged between 25 and 50 who spoke English and were either Facebook Page Admins or Small Business Owners.

SOLUTION: Think about your ideal client./customer.
Where do they live?
Female or male
Age group
What other interests do they have?
What other Facebook pages might they be fans of?

In the initial phases of a campaign I always test a couple of different audiences and then after a few days I choose the ones which are converting the best. I turn the others off and go from there.

The next time you run a campaign you can start with the audience which got the best traction for you but always be ready to test and tweak.

4. You don’t look at your ads from an outside perspective
PROBLEM: You are probably making mistakes which are costing you money.
In one FB scrolling alone I found over 5 ads that had some issue with them. One of the ads had been boosted by a business and it referred to today. I had already seen the ads a couple of days before so that left me wondering exactly when today was and whether I had missed my chance to go to that event.

facebookadexample1

Boosting an ad when you refer to today or tomorrow or next week is not a good use of your money

Another lady had written copy for her ad referring to signing up to a free video course but then included the video and no way to actually sign up.

Another ad was for a competition and it said pop over to win but didn’t actually say where we should go.

Sure all of these may have only spent $5 or $10 but if you add that up on over time it makes a huge difference.

SOLUTION: The same with any advertising or marketing – think about what your audience needs to know, don’t assume they already know. Isn’t that why you are advertising in the first place?

Test out your own ads. Make sure when you see the ad you can actually get where you expect people to go.

5. You take advice from anyone who will answer
PROBLEM: The likelihood is they are probably just regurgitating what they saw elsewhere or have achieved for their own business.

We’ve all been there and done that. The more advice you receive the more confused you will be. And you don’t want to spend your time following the wrong advice only to find out it doesn’t work.

SOLUTION: Find one or two trustworthy sources for your Facebook Advertising and follow their advice and information. Even better find a Facebook Ads specialist who can show you how to create ad campaigns and what to do if they’re not working